With its goblins, ghouls, and black cats, everyone knows that Halloween is just plain scary—but beware that it may be scary for your health, too. Trick-or-treating invites a sugar overload. For those with allergies, candy may contain egg or peanut protein that can trigger uncomfortable or downright dangerous reactions. This is in addition to the “sugar high” that may make it difficult for kids to focus and get adequate sleep.
Sugar and Health
Added sugar is regarded as one of the most harmful ingredients in our diet. Of course added sugar, such as sucrose or high fructose corn syrup, is the primary ingredient in Halloween candies and goodies. These Halloween items contain a lot of calories with no essential nutrients. Added sugar provides few if any proteins, vitamins, minerals, or essential fats. The sugar of Halloween treats feeds the harmful bacteria in the mouth, causing tooth decay.
People who consume a lot of sugar overload the liver with fructose. Too much of that can eventually lead to fatty liver disease. Too much sugar can also cause insulin resistance, leading to diabetes and other metabolic issues. And finally, sugar is a leading contributor to both children and adult obesity.
Sugar and the Skin
The ingestion of sugar and other high-glycemic foods raises the body’s insulin level. A spike in the insulin level can lead to inflammation throughout the body. This inflammation then produces enzymes that will break down the collagen and elastin in the skin, resulting in wrinkles and sagging.
Digested sugar attaches permanently to the collagen of the skin, a process called glycation. Glycation may increase the aging process and exacerbate skin conditions such as rosacea and acne.
Granted, Halloween is just one night, but the spoils of trick-or-treating can linger for far longer. Be wise in limiting candy intake for better health and more beautiful skin.